This year’s IDC report on the state of the Salesforce economy is another fascinating read and provides great insight into a business phenomenon whose momentum continues to grow.
In last year’s report, IDC revealed the enormous scale and global scope of the Salesforce economy. At the same time the report gave a clear sign that we were still at the early stages of cloud computing adoption given the large proportion of IT budget still being spent simply keeping legacy systems running. This year’s report adds more evidence that we’re still only on the ground floor of cloud adoption with a Y-o-Y growth forecast for public cloud adoption of 19% up to 2020 and here at FinancialForce we’re certainly seeing adoption rates that suggest that’s a conservative forecast.
Key reasons cited for cloud adoption
For me, however, the major takeaway is that we’ve finally moved on from the early assumptions that cloud adoption was simply about cost control and savings in IT infrastructure administration. Take a good look at “Figure 5 – Where Cloud Adoption Delivers Its Returns,” in the IDC report, and you’ll see the key reasons cited for cloud adoption are concerned with key business initiatives i.e., improving customer experience, improved employee engagement and operational improvement and innovation across the business. These are far loftier goals than just cost control and require fundamental change and process improvement than is possible by simply running the same old apps and workflows in a different datacenter.
These strategic business benefits are what the FinancialForce customers I meet talk about time and time again. They are using the Salesforce platform and the apps they run on that platform as key tools to fundamentally improve the way they engage with customers and operate as a business. For example, Polly Clavijo at Revolution Group describes how they achieved a whole new level of insight once they have moved their operations to the Salesforce platform:
“With FinancialForce on the Salesforce platform … we are running analytics in ways that we were never able to do before and only dreamed of being able to do.” Polly Clavijo, COO at Revolution Group
What the IDC study also highlights is the breadth and variety of business processes and workflows, whether ERP, CRM or HCM, that are being enhanced when moved to a cloud platform. The Salesforce AppExchange, celebrating the major milestone of 4 million installs, is making the delivery and adoption of these business applications quicker than we’ve ever seen before in the industry.
Exciting times for Salesforce indeed, as well as for its Partners and the rapidly growing business community it continues to enable.